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HindustanTimes Fri,22 Aug 2014

Taxman raids Ekta’s home, Balaji offices

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, April 30, 2013
First Published: 10:40 IST(30/4/2013) | Last Updated: 00:12 IST(1/5/2013)

Income Tax (I-T) authorities on Tuesday conducted searches on Balaji Telefilms, its sister concern Balaji Motion Pictures, Ekta Kapoor, her father Jeetendra, mother Shobha and brother Tusshar following information of alleged tax evasion. The I-T department was also investigating overseas monetary transactions by Balaji Telefilms and its sister concern.

While Jeetendra is the chairman of Balaji, Shobha is the managing director (MD), Ekta is joint MD and Tusshar is director.

The search operations, considered being major, involved around 100 I-T officials and staff of the investigation wing. It would continue on Wednesday.

I-T officials said that eight premises in Juhu, Andheri and Kandivali belonging to Balaji and the Kapoor family were covered in the search operations. Among these include their personal and Balaji Telefilms offices, their bungalow and studio.

"We received information about inflated expenditure and some cash dealings following which the searches began," an I-T official said requesting anonymity. He added that the department was also investigating information on investment in the company’s projects from abroad. “We have got information about a company abroad having financial dealings with Balaji and are probing the same to verify the details,” the official said.

Officials said that by inflating expenditure, profit is suppressed that helps in evading tax.

"We are going through the documents and account details to verify the evasion and its quantum," the official said adding that it would take time because the documents are voluminous. “We have got many documents, but some are yet to be recovered,” the official said.

The I-T teams seized the documents, account books, hard discs and various bills during the operation. Some bank lockers were also sealed.

Officials said that they would also cross verify with those groups or persons with whom the company or any of the Kapoor family members had financial dealings.

Officials said that the department would also check returns of past six years filed by the company and Kapoor family. Advance tax filed by them would also be checked.

Officials said that they recorded statements of the Kapoor family. While Ekta, Shobha and Jitendra were in the bungalow, Tusshar was out, but his statement was recorded.

Ekta Kapoor is co-producer of movies "Ek Thi Daayan", which released recently and "Shootout At Wadala" that is slated to release soon.

Despite repeated attempts, Ekta remained unavailable for comment. On the other hand, Balaji Motion Pictures' CEO Tanuj Garg messaged saying: "I can't talk (since) the screening of (Balaji's Shootout At Wadala) the film is on in the evening (on Tuesday)." But when insisted, he only stated thus: "I can't talk about the raids at all."

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